skip to content »

Updating fairness doctrine

updating fairness doctrine-29

The Fairness Doctrine was a policy of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC), introduced in 1949, that required the holders of broadcast licenses both to present controversial issues of public importance and to do so in a manner that was — in the Commission’s view — honest, equitable, and balanced.

It’s time to clean up the press – not just drain the swamp. When it comes to influencing public opinion, broadcasting has been the single most powerful force in American society since the turn of the 20th century, but especially since 1987. Because that's the year American society lost accountability for one-sided opinions spread over the airwaves.More specifically, August 1987 is when American broadcasting lost The Fairness Doctrine, an FCC regulation that required owners of broadcast licenses to present both sides of controversial issues considered to be in the public interest.broadcast five hours of programming a week with the documentaries and studio interview programs.We covered just about every controversial topic there was from nuclear power, to gay rights to the death penalty.With the August 1996 publication of a final rule on tobacco in the Federal Register, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will regulate the sale and distribution of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco to children and adolescents.

The provisions of the FDA rule are aimed at reducing youth access to tobacco products and the appeal of tobacco advertising to young people.

In addition, they claimed in phenomenally twisted arguments that it discouraged debate. The Fairness Doctrine encouraged diversity of opinion and with that, well argued debate.

Those days are gone and instead of debate we now have "rant and rave" journalism. People don't just seek information when they tune in but also validation of their personal prejudices. I know that Rachel Maddow and almost any program on NPR will make me feel good while just 10 minutes of Glenn Beck or Bill O'Reilly on Fox News will give me a ferocious headache.

The emphasis I remember best focused on energy and the environment through the core concepts of BBI programs, all of them.

To KTVU's credit, the docs were broadcast at a decent hour on weekends -- not in primetime -- but not in the middle of the night either. Meanwhile -- seizing the moment -- a highly charismatic radio personality in Sacramento started sharing his opinions.

Yes, Rachel Maddow rants and raves but I love what she says because I believe she digs deep and tells the truth.